In a world marked by conflicts in different regions
the United Nations peacekeeping operations are the most visible face of the collective commitment of international community to the promotion of peace and security.
Peacekeeping operations, although not explicitly provided for in the UN Charter, were gradually conceived as an instrument to guarantee the presence of the United Nations in conflict areas, with the aim to encourage parties to the conflict to peacefully settle their disputes. For that reason, they should not be regarded as an illegal means of armed intervention. Their legal basis is found in Chapters VI (pacific settlement of disputes), VII (action with respect to breaches of the peace and acts of aggression) and VIII (involvement of regional agencies and arrangements in the maintenance of peace and security) of the UN Charter.
In the past decades, particularly after the 1990s, the nature of peace operations has significantly evolved from forces of interposition and observation into more complex operations, with mandates in several fields. The growing importance of peace operations can be translated by figures: in 1988, the UN budget for those operations amounted to $ 230 million while the budget in 2019-2020 totaled $ 6.5 billion. There are currently 13 ongoing peacekeeping operations, which mobilize more than 100,000 people - among civilian, military and police personnel.
There has also been an increase in the number of multidimensional peace operations, that is, those mandated not only to monitor a cease-fire or the implementation of a peace agreement, but also facilitate political process, protect civilians, assist in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of combatants, support the organization of elections, protect and promote human rights, and assist in restoring the rule of law.